Tea is said to help your mood, to stimulate, and to calm. It is supposed to enhance the mood you’re in or help you turn that mood 180 degrees around — from depressed or very sad to happy and in a positive frame of mind. But that’s not what a “tea mood” is.
Your tea mood can be one where your tastebuds are craving that peppery tingle from a black Yunnan tea or the smooth and toasty flavor of that green tea/toasted rice combo in Genmaicha. But then again your mood can be determined by the weather, especially at a time when the planet is changing from one season to another. Whether the weather is gray skies pouring forth intermittent or steady showers or whether a brilliant sun spreading a hue of blue across the heavens, they catch you up in a tea mood. Gray days seem to call for something with a lot of zing, such as the rich, malty flavor of a nice CTC Assam (or a blend with it as the base) that will bring some internal sunshine to your day. Sunny days need something lighter, and a good option is a first or second flush Darjeeling or some Spring Pouchong (a wonderful Taiwanese oolong).
Feeling an appetite for some thick, steel-cut Irish oatmeal with a little cream and a spoonful of sugar? Great, then you’re probably also up for a hearty cuppa Irish Breakfast tea. Up for some Dim Sum? Then, you’ll also be in the mood for a light green tea — possibly Bi Luo Chun or Ming Mei, maybe even a nice cup of Jasmine Pearl. (Yes, your stomach is a key determiner of your tea mood quite frequently.)
Deciding what your tea mood is can be quite a dilemma. Sometimes you might stand in front of the selection of teas in your cupboard or pantry and scratch your head in bewilderment. You could just close your eyes, grab a package, and live with your choice. My guess is, though, that the more teas you get to know and love, the more you’ll know your tea mood and not have to resort to such drastic measures.
Tea Moments — Candles Setting the Mood
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